George Magoha, the Education Cabinet Secretary on Sunday, May 3, spoke on national examinations and the re-opening of schools at the daily government briefing on Covid-19.
Magoha asserted that the government had not yet considered postponing the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations, noting, however, that they would make the decision if deemed necessary.
He further asserted that the extension of school holidays to June 4, remained in place, stating that he was focused on dealing with the pandemic and not the re-opening of schools.
“Up to this point, the government has not decided to postpone the national examinations. We are going to shift the school calendar if it will be necessary.
“The children should enjoy their holidays and the schools shall remain closed effective 4th of this month (May) to 4th of next month,” he stated.
“If and when we are going to make the pronouncements to either shift the calendar or open schools we shall wait for the appropriate time, which has not arrived. That opportunity will come as we together look at what the government is doing,” he stated.
He further stated that the Education Ministry would ensure all children were placed on the same level when learning resumed, allaying fears that some students may gain an unfair advantage.
He stated that online learning would continue, acknowledging that the programme was not able to reach all children.
“Online coverage is accessible to all children but we know not all children are being reached. Efforts are being made to reach all children,” he noted.
Alluding to complaints by parents over fees being demanded by schools, Magoha stated that it was not the time to ‘haggle’, describing the situation as ‘disturbing’.
“It is also very disturbing to hear parents and the public only discussing about school opening and haggling about fees.
“It is important to remember that this is a medical crisis, not an economic crisis. The economic crisis is on the side and we must control the medical side first,” he asserted.